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Higher standards for hygiene

20 February 2009 | By Sarah Krol, Business Unit Manager, NSF

Consumers today make well-informed choices about the food products they purchase. Savvy shoppers have access to a wealth of information and select their products based on brand recognition, nutritional labelling and differentiating attributes such as Certified organic, allergen-free and fair-trade. The food processing industry must continually evolve to keep pace…

Assessing the safety of genetically modified crops used for food and feed purposes

20 February 2009 | By Gijs A. Kleter, RIKILT – Institute of Food Safety, Wageningen University and Research Center

In the mid-nineties, genetically modified crops (GM) that had been obtained through recombinant DNA technology were grown commercially at a large scale for the first time. The agricultural area that is covered with these crops has since then grown steadily, reaching 114 million hectares globally in 20072. GM crops and…

Light waves and food products in display cabinets

20 February 2009 | By Hanne Larsen & Annette Veberg Dahl, Research Scientists, Nofima Mat AS

The consumers want to see the product they are purchasing. The shops use special lighting in order to sell more, at the same time as prolonging the opening hours. The price the consumer pays for the combination of increased light exposure and the desire to see food products is that…

Non-target multicomponent analytical surveillance of food contact materials

20 February 2009 | By William D. van Dongen, Leon Coulier, Leo van Stee & Sander Koster, Analytical Research Department, TNO Quality of Life

Small organic molecules migrating from packaging or other food contact materials (FCM) may result in unwanted changes of the composition of the food. These molecules can be the ‘usual suspects', i.e. starting materials (non-reacted monomers) and additives but also by-products, reaction products, impurities, degradation products of additives and conjugation products,…

Food grade lubricants and the ELGI – NLGI

3 December 2008 | By Anuj Mistry, TLP Development Manager, Bel-Ray Company, Inc. and Chairman of ELGI- NLGI Food Grade Lubricants Working Group

Lubricants to be used in the production, processing, packaging and distribution of food, beverages, pharmaceuticals, personal care products and any other ‘clean’ products may be registered as meeting certain criteria that make them safe for use in these industries. A lubricant qualifies as food grade when, in the event of…

Steel: an enabler for sustainability

3 December 2008 | By The Association of European Producers of Steel for Packaging

Sustainability has risen swiftly up the world agenda in recent years. Consumers, governments and the industry recognise that we must look to reduce our global footprint in every area of our lives. As the world demands solutions for a sustainable future, the sustainability performance of steel for packaging can provide…

Sustainable agriculture at Unilever

3 December 2008 | By David Pendlington, Sustainable Agriculture Programme Coordinator, Unilever

Sustainability has become increasingly important to Unilever, especially our food business – which includes brands such as Knorr, Lipton and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. It is a core element in our Vitality Framework, which sets out how the company plans to achieve our mission of adding vitality to life…

Nanotechnology in the food industry

3 December 2008 | By NF

Applications of nanotechnology in the food industry mean different things to different people and this influences the perception of benefits and risks of nanotechnology. Nanotechnology is not a discrete area, but rather a broad spectrum of applications concerned with the rational modification of food structures at the molecular or macromolecular…

Quick shelf life prediction: TNO develops unique microbial genomics toolbox

3 December 2008 | By TNO, Food and Biotechnology Innovations

Consumers demand healthy, tasty foods with a fresh appearance and a long shelf life. To meet these expectations, the food industry has to be innovative in product and process optimisation. TNO has developed a unique microbial genomics toolbox that enables food manufacturers to quickly predict shelf life and design new…

Mapping food composition using NIR hyperspectral imaging

18 August 2008 | By S.J. Millar, M.B. Whitworth, A. Chau, Campden & Chorleywood Food Research Association and J.R. Gilchrist, Gilden Photonics Ltd

Near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy is widely used in the global agri-food industry for the non-destructive assessment of both the compositional and physical characteristics of a wide range of raw materials and finished products. This is particularly so in the cereals and related industries where, following the commercial development of suitable…

A perspective on actual technologies and future developments

18 August 2008 | By Giuseppe Mensitieri, University of Naples Federico II and Giovanna Giuliana Buonocore, Institute for Composite and Biomedical Materials – National Research Council

In this contribution, the topic of Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) is reviewed by describing the actual status of this technology and its possible developments, which are mainly related to the combination of MAP with other preservation technologies. Among them, particular attention is devoted to active packaging with antimicrobial properties.

The risks of psychrotrophic Clostridium botulinum in MAP and vacuum packed chilled foods

18 August 2008 | By Greg Jones, Senior Research Officer for the Preservation, Processing and Spoilage Group, Campden & Chorleywood Food Research Association

Foodborne botulism is a severe illness that is caused by the consumption of foods containing a neurotoxin produced by a bacterium called Clostridium botulinum. Very little of this toxin is required to cause illness; for example, in 2002, a 35 year old man put a piece of baked potato in…

Major boost for food and drink industry

18 August 2008 | By Martin Lowe, Managing Director, CenFRA Ltd

Figures suggest that since the start of the 21st century, there has been a three-fold increase in the use of automation and robots in the global food sector. However, many food and beverage producers in the UK appear reluctant to adopt this technological advance.

Innovation directions

13 June 2008 | By Francesco Pantò, Roberto Ranieri and Renzo Rizzo, R&D, Barilla G. e R. Fratelli

Pasta is recognised as a family menu staple because it offers a number of unique benefits that other foods do not, such as a broad taste appeal, the versatility of usage, the convenience of preparation and being an inexpensive alternative to other main entrees.

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